Representatives from 50 countries will be gathering in New Delhi on 19-20 March for an informal World Trade Organisation (WTO) ministerial meeting. The informal meeting of ministers will provide an opportunity to engage in free and frank discussions with the hope that it will lead to political guidance on some major issues.
In the absence of Ministerial guidance at the Eleventh Ministerial Conference (MC 11) that took place from 10 to 13 December 2017 in Buenos Aires, Argentina, it is hoped that the New Delhi meeting will provide an opportunity for ministers to explore in greater detail the options on different issues for re-invigorating the WTO.
Safeguarding and strengthening the multilateral trading system was never as important as it is today, and the WTO is also facing systemic challenges, particularly its dispute settlement arm. The informal meeting of ministers in New Delhi will provide an opportunity to engage in free and frank discussions leading to political guidance on some of the major issues, both at the negotiating table and also in other areas.